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Weekly Update

Please put down your Pencils

by Thor Nystrom
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET




NFL Draft News:

 

  • USC QB Cody Kessler has spent the draft process attempting to generate more power and touch on his deep throws. "I wasn’t stepping into my throws and was moving around a little bit," Kessler said. The signal-caller says correcting his delivery flaws this winter had already improved his accuracy. The 6-foot-1, 220-pounder was given perimeter talent most quarterbacks can only dream of in college. We’ve never been high on him.


  • Following Arizona ILB Scooby Wright’s Pro Day workout last week, TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline wrote that the 6-foot, 239-pound linebacker "wasn't overly impressive,” adding that he was told that "[Wright’s] position work was solid, but nothing outstanding." So, bummer, right? No! Not in the buoyant gravitational field of Drew Rosenhaus’s flattery. You’re never going to guess Rosenhaus' reaction to Scooby’s workout. Wright "definitely helped” his draft stock on Thursday, according to the super agent. You won’t be surprised to learn that Rosenhaus represents Scooby Snacks. "Coming out of this workout, he definitely helped himself," Rosenhaus said. "The film is so awesome for him. All we really wanted to accomplish was to have some good numbers. … He may not be the best athlete in the draft, but he’s one of the great football players.” You’re a gem Drew Rosenhaus. Never change. If I had one billion dollars, I’m going to tell you what I’d do. I’d buy out your agency for the purposes of reassigning you to the job of following me around and cheerleading all the poor life choices I make during billable hours.


  • Utah RB Devontae Booker will hold his own Pro Day on April 12. Booker's pre-draft process was decimated by a torn meniscus suffered in November. We’re not as high on Booker as others and would let another team draft him.


  • German WR Moritz Boehringer put on a show while participating in the Florida Atlantic Pro Day event on Thursday. The 6-foot-4, 225-pounder posted a 4.41-second 40-yard dash time, a 39-inch vertical jump, a 10-foot-11 broad jump and a 6.64 second three-cone drill. NFL.com's Andy Feneion wrote that Boehringer had "scouts on the ground doing double-takes at their stopwatches and laughing." Boehringer was honored as the German Football League Rookie of the Year in 2015 after bagging a nice little 70-1,461-16 line. "I came here today knowing what I needed to do,” Boehringer said. “But I didn't realize there was going to be so many people watching me." Welcome to America, kid! You’ll be a zombie phone checking narcissist in no time!



  • Baylor PF Rico Gathers is preparing for the 2016 NFL Draft. He’s working with Duke Rouse in Florida with an eye on becoming the newest TE monster produced by collegiate basketball. Baylor HC Art Briles will not quit trying to convince Gathers to play football for him next year until Gathers rescinds his collegiate eligibility altogether.


  • Speed questions were the main bugaboo of Ole Miss WR Laquon Treadwell’s NFL projection coming into this process. He proceeded to skip the 40-yard dash at the Combine, setting the stage for a hugely important Pro Day run. He chugged to times in the low-to-mid 4.6s during that event, which took place on Monday. Considering that every prospect shaves time off their Combine times at their Pro Day event, this wasn’t the most promising development. "To me, he put it in the fairway,” NFL Media's Daniel Jeremiah noted in a helpful, glass half full kind of way. Jeremiah says Treadwell remains in play for the Giants at No. 10. We know he has meetings and workouts scheduled with the Vikings, Browns, Bears, Bengals and Cowboys coming up. I wouldn’t use a top-20 pick on Treadwell and prefer both Baylor’s Corey Coleman and TCU’s Josh Doctson as prospects.


  • You best believe the Titans, owners of the No. 1 overall pick, were well represented at FSU’s Pro Day. They came, of course, to scout the great Everett Golson, the potential No. 1 overall pick. I kid! Jalen Ramsey was the apple of Tennessee’s eye. His workout on Tuesday was taken in by GM Jon Robinson, HC Mike Mularkey and director of college scouting Blake Beddingfield. "I think he can play both spots and he can play them to a high level,” Robinson said of Ramsey at Ole Miss’ Pro Day event on Monday. “He's shown that he's capable of doing that. He, like Laremy and a couple other guys in this draft, they're going to be impact players for whatever team drafts them." 


  • Ole Miss DL Robert Nkemdiche has 14 official visits scheduled. On Sunday night, according to TFY Draft Insider’s Tony Pauline, Nkemdiche dined with the Cowboys’ brass. On Thursday, Nkemdiche met with the Broncos. Dallas set up an official facility visit as well. The 6-foot-3, 294-pounder also has upcoming visits with the Giants, 49ers, Chargers, Raiders, Buccaneers and Bears. The Raiders and Cowboys could both use Nkemdiche and have a history of rolling the dice on talented, eccentric young men in the draft. Mired with personality questions – anonymous sources keep calling him “weird”, which tells me two things: 1.) The team who drafts him should also draft Connor Cook and the two should room together and star in a reality TV show called something like “Too Many Cooks” or “Cooking up Trouble” or “Nkem Trails”, about the life of humans who find themselves in the strange reality of having strangers impugn their characters without ever having met them, 2.) The NFL’s personality and thought structure paradigms—what I perceive them to be—are basically the opposite of how free thinking folks aspire to see the world; calling Nkemdiche “weird” may just mean he’s incapable of the kind of programmed obedience coaches demand – Nkemdiche needs to have a strong few weeks of sit downs leading up to the Draft later this month.


  • I've settled on "Nkem Trails" as the title of the show, with the hotel security footage of his epic window leap played in the title sequence of each episode. Anyhoo, Pauline passed along that the DL coaches of the Miami Dolphins and Cincinnati Bengals "tried to break [Nkemdiche]" at Ole Miss' Pro Day event. "Everyone in attendance was very impressed with his position drills," Pauline wrote, "with some calling it a 'special workout.'"


  • LSU LB Deion Jones will visit the Ravens, Eagles, Colts and Jets in the coming days and weeks. A linebacker with safety speed (and size), Jones is taste specific, but he suits our pallet because we think he fits the new NFL game. We see Telvin Smith with a few Lavonte David traits.


  • North Dakota State QB Carson Wentz scored a 40 out of 50 on the Wonderlic exam. Wentz previously slayed Senior Bowl week, the Combine, the Combine’s interview process and his Pro Day event. Remember the draft process Teddy Bridgewater had? Wentz is having the opposite of that. Per 95.7 The Game's John Middlekauf, Wentz also posted a 63-of-65 passing portrait, compared to Jared Goff’s 36-of-50 showing.


     

Quotable:

 

 

  • Houston LB Elandon Roberts is the No. 1 linebacker in the draft. According to a draft analyst named… Elandon Roberts. "The team that pulls the trigger on me is getting the best linebacker in the draft," Roberts said. Snubbed from the NFL Scouting Combine, Roberts ran the 40-yard dash in the 4.5 range, threw up 25 bench press reps and was put through positional drills by Texans LB coach Mike Vrabel at his Pro Day event. Roberts isn’t only the best linebacker in the draft, though. No no no. He may be, according to Elandon Roberts, one of the best to ever play the sport. "The team that takes me is definitely getting a steal. When they get that, I'm going to the Super Bowl and be a Hall of Famer,” Roberts said. “I feel like I'm the best inside linebacker in college football. I feel like I raised some eyebrows.” Drew Rosenhaus is signing up for hyperbole classes at Elandon Roberts University as we speak. I recommend Straw Man Argument 101! Prof is a total brain!


  • An NFL scout who attended Ole Miss’ Pro Day had this to say about Laremy Tunsil’s workout: "The most impressive thing was Laremy Tunsil's bench, how explosive he was.” Tunsil’s 34 reps would have tied Arizona State's Christian Westerman for top billing at the Combine. "(We) looked at each other like ‘holy s***,’” the scout said of he and his crusty brethren. Following the workout, CBS Sports’ Dane Brugler pegged Tunsil as a heavy favorite to go No. 1 overall.


  • An anonymous NFL scout speaking with NJ.com believes Arkansas' Hunter Henry is the most complete TE prospect in years. "He's a legitimate first round pick," the scout said. All three scouts speaking to NJ.com praised Henry’s blocking. What’s odd about that subject is nobody is neutral on it: Half of scouts and analysts think Henry is a swinging gate and the other half think he’s Dave Casper.  


  • Jalen Ramsey says the Titans should draft him because he's the best player in the class, not because he’s a local. "They shouldn't take me because I'm a Nashville kid. They should take me because I'm the best player in the draft," Ramsey told NFL Media's Albert Breer at Tuesday's Pro Day. The 6-foot-1, 209-pounder hails from Smyrna, less than 30 minutes outside of Nashville. Rotoworld's Josh Norris continues to slot Ramsey to the Titans at No. 1. I say they go Tunsil or trade down. Elandon Roberts reports that Tennessee is leaning towards Elandon Roberts.

 

 

 

Conflation Station:

 

 

  • Pro Football Focus compares USC LB/S Su'a Cravens to Thomas Davis. "The team that drafts Cravens will likely be hoping that his best-case scenario is becoming the new Thomas Davis, a safety convert with the skills to play weakside linebacker and showcase his playmaking ability in that regard," PFF's analysis team noted. Interestingly, Tony Pauline reported last week that the Panthers have "scary interest" in Cravens as Davis’ potential successor. While we agree with PFF and others that Cravens is an NFL linebacker, Cravens and Pauline both say NFL teams on the whole project him more as a safety.

 

  • NFL Media's Lance Zierlein sees Cole Beasley when he watches Western Michigan slot maven Daniel Braverman. "With quickness out of his breaks and shiftiness after the catch, Braverman could become a productive slot specialist in the right situation," he wrote. Rotoworld and PFF both also like Braverman more than most. PFF, in fact, calls Braverman a second-round talent.

 

College Football News:

 

  • Virginia Tech HC Justin Fuente is running high speed practices that come in stark contrast to predecessor Frank Beamer’s leisurely pace. "Virginia Tech moved very fast, both in drills and between them. What was normally 8-minute periods last year were reduced to 5-minute periods for the time we saw. You didn't see a lot of inactivity," the Roanoke Times' Andy Bitter wrote. Fuente is attempting to install the high-speed, spread attack that turned around Memphis’ program. “On one particular drill that had the majority of the first-teamers, Tech rattled off 3 or 4 plays in a row, getting back to the line of scrimmage in between in probably about 10 seconds or less and snapping the ball again,” Bitter wrote.

  • Boston College turned down the Boston Red Sox’s offer to play UConn at Fenway Park on November 19. "Given the positive feedback we received on last November’s Shamrock Series, the Red Sox would love to see a return of BC football to Fenway Park in the near future,” Red Sox president Sam Kennedy said. “We have extended the invitation for BC to return whenever it works for their schedule." The Eagles don’t want to trade any home games for neutral site affairs.

  • Mississippi State is investigating an assault of a woman -- the video of which is online and isn’t recommended viewing -- that got 6-foot-4, 251-pound freshman DE Jeffrey Simmons charged with simple assault and cited for disturbing the peace by fighting. "I want to see some of the police reports,” HC Dan Mullen said. “There's so much more I want to evaluate within the situation before I make a decision about what's best for our program." If Simmons weren’t a five-star recruit, there’s a chance he’d already have been kicked off the team by now.

 

  • South Carolina redshirt senior QB Perry Orth broke his collarbone during a spring practice session on Saturday. He’s out for the remainder of spring practice. Dr. Elandon Roberts performed a flawless surgical procedure on Orth after having stayed in a Holliday Inn Express the night before.

 

  • Texas redshirt sophomore QB Jerrod Heard is also out for the rest of spring practice after suffering a strained shoulder on Tuesday.

 

  • FSU OLB Reggie Northrup signed on with Young Money Sports, Lil Wayne's representation agency, becoming the first prospect to ink with Weezy. Wayne attended FSU's Pro Day on Tuesday to check out his client. The 6-foot-1, 231-pound Northrup led FSU with 94 tackles last year.

 

  • Personal matters forced new Maryland DC Scott Shafer to step down on Friday.
Thor Nystrom

Thor Nystrom is Rotoworld’s lead CFB writer. The 2018 FSWA College Sports Writer of the Year, Nystrom’s writing has also been honored by Rolling Stone magazine and The Best American Essays series. Say hi to him on Twitter @thorku!